Autumnal Craft Fair!

Last weekend saw How Green make a rare public outing with our plants! We only attend three shows per year, two of them being at Penshurst Place for their Spring and then Autumn craft fairs.

We have a strong working relationship that goes back nearly thirty years with Penshurst Place, as we stock their plant stand on a weekly basis and hire our topiary for weddings in the great Barons Hall. Coupled with the venue only ten minutes from the nursery, it’s natural for us to make the annual pilgrimage!

We arrived on Thursday in blistering heat, exceeding 30oC, to build a mini show garden in conjunction with Chilstone from Fordcombe. To celebrate Chilstone’s 60th anniversary, we created a diamond shaped garden around one of their fantastic fountains that acted as the centrepiece. A local copper artist also showcased his art with a wonderful contemporary garden chair and…………..a bath! We here at How Green have never been asked to base a show garden around a bath, but there’s a first time for everything!

The planting plan used a variety of grasses and late flowering perennials to create a naturalistic, prairie style of planting. We used plenty of Echinaceas, Agastaches, Salvias and Nepeta. Within minutes of setting up the garden, it was awash with bees, hoverflies and butterflies – a truly magnificent sight! We also attended with our own plant stand, with lots of our new plants for 2014 on sale. Our display looked wonderful with our Heucheras, displaying no less than 46 different varieties!

The old saying ‘ how different one day from the next can be’ couldn’t be more apt at the show! Suffering from sunburn and dehydration from setting up the garden,  Friday slapped us in the face with……Autumn! Rain, wind and only 16oC! thankfully the weather improved on Saturday and sales were great. Sunday was again changeable, but it was great to see so many enthusiastic gardeners out there, eager to get their gardens into shape for Autumn!

This week sees a busy time at the nursery with a trade open day on Friday 13th (hope it’s not a bad omen! – see side bar) and then our last public open weekend of the year. We open our gates on Saturday 14th & Sunday 15th and a warm welcome to all to browse our strictly wholesale only nursery. Our nursery is at capacity and full to bursting with plants for the 2014 season. Many new additions on offer. If plant shopping gets all to much for you, relax in our Summer house with an array of tasty home made cakes and teas!

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Public Open Days 6th & 7th April!

Our public open days are back! 6th & 7th April 2013We’re all getting a little excited here at How Green, as all roads lead to the nursery next weekend with our first public open days of the year!

Due to phenomenal demand, the very special, limited public days are back! The strictly wholesale nursery throws open it’s gates on Saturday 6th & Sunday 7th April.

Come and wander round our six acre, plant packed site, offering nearly 4000 different perennials, grasses, alpines, herbs, vegetable plants, soft fruit, patio plants, potted bulbs and topiary. We specialise in introducing the most up-to-date, must have plants, as well as traditional garden favourites.

A warm welcome awaits all and there will be expert advice on hand on both days, and if being bamboozled by so many plants becomes too much, relax in our Summerhouse with a well earned cup of tea & home made cake!

Open 9am – 5pm on both days. ****5% off your plants if you mention this website!****

open day tea and cakes this year in the summerhouse and gardens

Growing for Chelsea

2013 signifies a monumental landmark for the Chelsea Flower Show. This year the show will be celebrating it’s 100th anniversary! Designers will be pulling out all the stops to make it the best show ever!

How Green Nurseries insight into the show comes through local designer Roger Platt. Having dealt with Roger for many years, he has approached us to grow a selection of plants for his M & G sponsored ’Windows Through Time’ Garden.

We are growing a selection of large grasses, along with Alliums, Delphiniums, Lupins and Primulas to name a few! We have grown plants for numerous designers for different shows down through the years. We know the time constraints for growing to a set date can be challenging and this year looks to be no different with this current inclement weather!

We juggle the growing by potting into large pots and alternating our stock from warm tunnels to outside to toughen-up. Fingers crossed we won’t let Roger down.

The M & G ’Windows Through Time’ Garden, I’m sure you’ll agree looks fantastic on paper! A clever garden that takes in the RHS Chelsea Flower show’s different styles and trends down through the years. Contemporary planting and sculpture drifts effortlessly into a more traditional theme, creating a garden that leads the eye.

Check our Facebook site for regular updates on how we are progressing with Rogers plants!

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Trade Only Open Days

This year for the first time, How Green Nursery are running a series of  trade only days! Those of you who already use us will know that you are more than welcome to visit the nursery at any time throughout the season. What makes these days different, is that we are offering some very special rates, but only on orders taken on the day.

Browse the nursery at your leisure and check out our stock that totals nearly 4000 different plants! A warm welcome awaits you, with wagging tails from the nursery dogs and if you’re lucky, tea and biscuits!

So if you are in the trade, a garden designer/landscaper, garden centre owner or plant nut in the trade, pop along and see us on Friday 8th & Saturday 9th March!

These are strictly trade only days and will not be open to the public.

Fear not! Those of you not in the trade, look out for our special, very limited public open weekends! Check us out for further details nearer the event.

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A New Venture!

Last week the hard working staff at How Green finished a project to rejuvenate a prominent bed in Caterham on the Hill in Surrey. Working with the town’s parish council, we scrubbed out the tired, old shrubs and bedding.

The brief was a complicated one! A low maintenance, drought tolerant garden that has all year round interest, with the wow factor! Not a particulary easy remit!!

The shape and layout of the existing bed did not need changing and in fact it is a very well thought out shape and pleasing to the eye. Not the dull rectangular shaped beds we’re used to, it is an attractive half-moon shaped crescent, with a slope not too disimilar to a plaque bed.

After several meetings with the clients and deliberation over what style to go for, we settled on a design that incorporated many grasses, hardy, drought tolerant perennials and bulbs such as Alliums. The overall effect to give a prairie, naturalistic look.

Grasses add height and structure and have been planted in drifts, in keeping with the curves of the bed. Very hardy, long flowering perennials such as Nepeta Walkers Low, Salvia Caradonna & Agastache Blue Fortune have been used. In all, over 300 plants have been used, which in time will enhance the bed.

A big problem with the site was weeds! With low maintenance in mind, we used a permeable membrane to supress any weed growth. The membrane in turn allows water to pass through to the plants and also helps moisture retention in drier periods. To complete the look a layer of decorative shingle has been used.

The centre piece of the bed is a beautiful multi-stemmed Betula jacquemontii. With it’s silvery white bark on the main stem & branches it gives fantastic Winter interest. In time it’s canopy in the Summer will give a gentle dappled shade for the two benches under it.

To add Winter structure, some evergreen shrubs have been used and colourful Cornus (Dogwoods) to break the gloom. The spent grass heads will also be left over the Winter to add height and a sparkle with frost. Aged oak has been used as a feature and  to give height and structure, especially for when the herbaceous plants become dormant.

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